Friday, December 21, 2007

Restraining the Unrestrainable

Last night I found myself gathering some last minute holiday gifts. Mr. Zoom wasn't with me, as 75% of my reason for purposely placing myself in the middle of sticky retail holiday ooze was to get an item for him I had just that day thought of as a really good gift idea.

The particular store(s) I had to share personal space with strangers with was one that potentially carried a video game for Mr. Zoom's Wii that I knew he'd been looking for and it was not on his Christmas list. It is the Tiger Woods Golf that came out, and apparently has sold out just about everywhere. The only reason I knew Mr. Zoom wanted it was that he mentioned he couldn't find it. Let me tell you something. If he can't find it, it can't be found.

Knowing this, I checked each store and of course, they too were sold out. Until I got to Target. My beloved Target. But here's the thing. Wii games are locked in a glass case. And there was only 1 Tiger Woods game left in the case. It was shouting "I'M THE POPULAR GAME EVERYONE WANTS, I'M THE LAST ONE, YOU'LL NEVER GET ME." I've never purchased a game behind glass before, so I had no idea what to do, really. There were a lot of other people peering into the same case that I was looking in. I fought the urge to throw my body against the case and yell "BACK OFF."

Instead, I ran (literally, I ran) to the register where the only employee of Target in my eyesight was ringing up a customer's purchase. I stood in line behind the customer and kept searching out the visible floor for any other red shirts who I could pounce on and demand they unlock my game for me. I wasn't too wound up, because I was next in line - but then customer guy started writing a check for his purchase. A CHECK. Not only that, but his check was rejected and he then tried to pay for his item with credit cards, business cards, oolongs and probably some orange peels.

About that time an employee of Target crossed my path. And I did notice he had on a black shirt, but he still had a name tag on. I stopped him and blurted "Excusemecanyougetanitemoutofthecaseforme?????!!!" He put up his hands in that woah woah woah manner and said "Sorry, I work in the portrait studio. I can't help you out." Then he ran away, which was wise.

I was beginning to feel exactly like one of those crazed holiday shoppers I swore I'd never ever be - one of those shoppers I've been run over by in the past - only a LOT worse. I tried to gather myself, but the potential that I could be the person to bring home a game for Mr. Zoom that I knew he wanted and he could not find was far too much for me to handle. I started to twitch while waiting in line. TWITCHING!

Around that time, something somewhere magically cleared for the customer and he was free to go. And at that exact moment a second Target employee entered the area and I lept at him. "CANYOUGETAGAMEOUTOFTHECASEFORME???". Employee #2 looked just as rattled as portrait studio guy - but grabbed his keys and motioned to me. He said "I'm on my way over there now, so I can get all of them at the same time." Which freaked me out because now I was convinced someone else had claimed the game I needed before I could do so. I tried to corner him into telling me the rules for calling dibs on ... say ... the very last Tiger Woods Wii game that might be in the case. "Ok, say I've been in line - I SAW the game first, but couldn't find anyone to get it for me. Then someone else finds a wandering employee and asks for the game. WHO GETS IT??" He actually giggled at me - seeing my attempt to badger him into agreeing that I should get whatever I was asking for, and asked which one I needed. "TIGER WOODS!" "Oh, yeah. We have just one of those left. I'll get it for you." Ahhh. The promise of victory.

I finally got it paid for and into my purse. I had 3 more stops to make before I could go home, because I still wanted to get him the item I started out for.

Normal people can wait to give a Christmas or birthday gift on the actual day of the event. I.CAN.NOT. It physically drains me to have a gift for someone and not be able to give it to them. Mr. Zoom is very familiar with this. Now I had to decide if I was going to attempt to hold this item for Christmas, or if I was just going to give it to him right away.

I got home and when I got through the door I threw my arms up in the air (like a ref signaling a field goal) and ran a circle through the entire house. Then I stopped at a very very confused Mr. Zoom and said "I'm sorry, but this has to happen right now." Or at least that's what I was trying to say. What he probably heard was "huuunnn yieeee wehehhheeeee neeeee!" I handed him the bag and jumped up and down like a mental patient trying to catch invisible hoops with her head.

Yes, I had TOTALLY decided to hold it until Christmas.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

I Am Jesus' Pinata.

This afternoon I was driving down the street gently embracing a nugget of nonsense my parents had handed to me over lunch. They had seen I Am Legend over the weekend and were not happy about it. Which is odd, because my parents love all film, craptacular and brilliant alike. So my senses perked up and I asked them what they disliked about IAL. Their answer?

And I'm not making this up ...."it was scary."

My FAM was adamant that Alvin and the Chipmunks would have been a much better choice.

I was simply struck silent. There was nothing I could or can (even now, 6 hours later) say that would make that conversation up there more beautiful than it already is.

As I rounded the corner to arrive home and convey this story to Mr. Zoom - I was greeted by something magical hanging off of a neighborhood mail box.

I think I know how the Wise Men felt when they saw the Star in the sky. I slammed on the brakes and maneuvered my truck to the side of the road. I grabbed my camera from my bag and recorded my very first, ever in my lifetime, never even knew they existed - Santa Pinata sighting. A SANTATA!

I simply cannot believe my parents did not find and purchase at least 4 of these before anyone else in California did. They are totally slipping.

Friday, December 14, 2007

No Eye Contact. Ever. Again.

Technology is such a wonderful thing. I can say I love it more than I hate it. BUT, when I do hate it - it's a burning, not healthy and totally unreasonable hate. Mostly because it is my fault it has bitten me in the britches and I could have prevented it.

Mr. Zoom embraces technology so fast and so flexibly - that he often can not understand what is wrong with the rest of us. If you are a retailer or utility that requires payments from the Zooms, you BETTER have an on line and preferably an automatic payment interface or Mr. Zoom might actually find your offices and demand you do so - in person.

Naturally then, at Holiday time we Zooms are going to coordinate gift purchases via e-mail. This week a rapid fire informational session was happening when it was brought to our attention that Mr. Zoom had accidentally sent an e-mail containing information about a gift already purchased - including the person who the gift was for. OOPS! He made repairs quickly, and all is forgiven.

When that happened, I thought to myself "Wow. That mistake was totally mine. I know for a fact I should have been the one to have done that. After all, I've totally shot my e-mail yapper off to the wrong parties in the past, and he's so careful and better at this kind of thing than I am."

Later in the week I shot off a customary at work - I'm thinking about you and love you - e-mail to Mr. Zoom. We work at the same company, but you'd be surprised how little we actually see of each other during the work day. I like to send afternoon reminders that we are married now, and regardless of any smartening up he's done since agreeing to marry me, he can't get away from me. I knew he'd been super busy this week with a tech roll out, but was still a little perplexed at having received no return e-mail almost an hour later.

About that time, I saw an e-mail arrive from my Boss. The preview box showed me the contents of his e-mail to me: "??" That's when I realized I had sent the following e-mail TO MY MALE, MARRIED BOSS - Subject: gosh I love you - Contents of e-mail: so very much.

At that moment, all of the oxygen on our green and blue planet was then sucked out of the atmosphere and transported directly into my head. And it hurt. A lot. Because apparently my brain no longer resides in there and nature hates a vacuum. I immediately shot off an explanatory e-mail to the Boss: OMG. I AM SOOOO SORRY. THAT WAS SUPPOSED TO GO TO MY HUSBAND!! And then I fought the urge to faint at my desk while sitting in my chair.

My Boss came out of his office and mercifully, had a good long laugh with me and the few other people around us who were let in on what happened. I was so terribly embarrassed by my error that others started to blush FOR ME. Then we all started laughing so hard we all cried. I continued to laugh cry while I deleted all the evidence of my brain taking leave of my head.

Later that evening Mr. Zoom and I were running errands. I began my story this way: "I'm going to tell you a story. It is horribly embarrassing for me. Literally. painfully. embarrassing. But I'm going to tell you anyway." I got my story out, and as expected he shook his head in that "only my wife" way. He said "And how come I'm only hearing about this now?" I replied "Because I literally just this second got over it enough to tell you without crying."

And we laughed. Because that's what we do. Although between fits of laughter I had pangs of tears - and in an attempt to justify the see/saw emotions I blubbered "Ok, so let's review. You ruin a teeny part of someone's Christmas by accidentally revealing one of their gifts to them. I wind up nearly breaking up two marriages and embarrassing myself beyond all .... all... get-it-backedness (was searching for the word redemption)!!"

It's time for me to set the e-mail program to "delay all sent messages for 5 minutes". Even if it wouldn't have saved me this time. Maybe it will manage to keep me married for just that much longer.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Touched in the Head by PDR

I was in the copy room one day and something caught my eye. The recycle bin had a HUGE, red, hardcover book resting on the top of the pile. Because I adore books, I ran over to it and yoinked it out of the recycle bin. It was a Pysicians Desk Reference, for the year 2004. I snuk the treasure home, where Mr. Zoom promptly caught me and called me out on my skulking through the house with it. "IT WAS ON THE TOP, IN THE RECYCLE BIN!! I HAD to bring it home. You know I did. It's a book, it's about drugs and it has color pictures of drugs in it. SCORE!!"

The fact is, I will probably never ever use it for anything other than pressing a flower (which I haven't done since high school) or as a doorstop. Even worse, it will probably end up in our bookshelf and it will collect dust. But I love it just the same. If I have to start calling it Vintage just to keep it in the house, I will.

But I don't have to do that. Because Mr. Zoom lets me - be me. No matter what. Even if our co-workers start calling me dumpster dive .